Ferrari confirm Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso will stay on for 2015 season
Scuderia's driver line-up to be unchanged next season;
By Pete Gill
Last Updated: 24/08/14 8:46am
Ferrari boss Marco Mattiacci has confirmed to Sky Sports F1 that Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso will be retained for 2015.
The futures of both Alonso and Raikkonen have been cast in doubt this year, with the Finn struggling to get to grips with the ill-handling F14 T on his return to Scuderia and the Spaniard linked with a return to McLaren in the wake of another disappointing year at the Italian outfit.
However, Mattiacci has insisted to Sky Sports F1's Martin Brundle that both drivers will remain with the team for next year.
The interview will be played in full as part of Sky F1’s coverage of the Belgian GP from 11.30am on Sunday.
2007 World Champion Raikkonen remains Ferrari's last title winner while Alonso is regarded by many in the paddock as the best driver on the grid and their union, at the expense of the ousted Felipe Massa, was expected to signal the Scuderia's revival this term.
Instead, the team have struggled throughout 2014 and are a distant third in the Constructors' Championship after failing to win a race. In a terse admission this weekend, Chassis Technical Director James Allison admitted that the Scuderia had been guilty of 'short-termism' in their quest to catch Red Bull and, more recently, Mercedes.
"I don't think Ferrari has ever lacked for resource or quality of people or quality of drivers. We have many of the key parts for being a successful team," Allison said.
"What all of us are trying to do, with Marco spearheading that, is to identify the areas where we are not yet championship-leading material to put those right. Most of those weaknesses are organisation and a tendency to work a little short-term in the past."
But while Alonso and Raikkonen are to be retained, change is afoot at the team as the Scuderia's hierachy plot their return to the front of the grid. Long-time boss Stefano Domenicali was replaced by Mattiacci in April following the Scuderia’s dismal start to F1’s new turbo era, while the exit of Luca Marmorini was confirmed during the summer break.
On the track, the team's struggles to keep pace with Red Bull and Mercedes continued in Saturday's qualifying session for the Belgian GP with Alonso excelling to claim fourth while Raikkonen - four times a winner at Spa - lines up eighth.
Sunday's race starts at 1pm, with Sky F1's coverage underway at 11.30am.